Sunday, April 29, 2012

EDM April 29, kitchen windowscape

Glass Pyrex measuring jugs and various other kitchen items on a wire shelf under the windowsill. Arches hotpress, about 8 x 10, pilot pen ink and wash, touches of Caran d'ache crayon.

Blogistas who would like to see the latest Dolliver (character doll) caper, go here


Saturday, April 28, 2012

EDM April 28, new kitchen table

So I needed a new table in the kitchen, nice sunshine in the afternoon, good for drinking tea and eating cake. However, the budget totally will not run to one now or in the foreseeable future.

So I did some DIY with stuff I had. My keyboard, not played now for quite a while, I wrapped and put on a shelf for future reference, and the stand it came with now would work, with a bit of engineering, as the base for a table. The top is the round glass top from an ancient long gone patio set, which has been pressed into use to hold plants in the living room, set on two small tables.

And now I have a kitchen table,about the right height -- the adjustment is where the engineering came in -- and, wedged with newspaper to keep it steady, working just fine,with its new cloth and dinky crocheted top thing, to honor the crocheter who made it.

So I thought I'd better record this while the recording's good. Another indoor landscape. Kitchenscape. On the shelf in the background, the begonia on the right is just there to look nice, the partygoer of the plant world, while its neighbor to the left is my vital aloe vera, used almost daily to cure the burns I inevitably manage to get in the course of working with the stove.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Everyday Matters April 27, shells

click to enlarge

This is a little setup of shells, one long one whose name I forget, and clamshells, with bits of beach glass and pebbles. When I go to the shore, about an hour from here, in spring and fall, can't deal with it in the hot summer, I like to bring home a few items like this to make an inland beach on the patio table or, as now, in the house, in a ceramic dish. I also use big clamshells as soap holders in my bathrooms. Very green!

When I draw shells, I'm always struck by how much they resemble nutshells. Similarly, when I draw fungi, I notice that a lot of them are very much like seashells.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

EDM April 26, what I read lately

This is one of those miniature drawings, about 4.5 x 5 inches, on Arches hotpress, using pilot pen and Caran d'ache watercolor crayons.

It's about what I'm reading at the moment, and reviewing in my other blog, Field and Fen, which you can visit, if you would like to here

The other clutter is the book I draw in, a glass of water, sponge brushes, the corner of my Caran d tin -- I love this tin, since it is possible to use the opened lid as a tiny palette. And if you can click to enlarge, you can see the lacy effect in the curtains which I got by pressing paper towel into the paint while it was still wet.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

EDM April 25, the artist's hand

This is a drawing of my hand steadying the book while I work in it. I wear two rings since Handsome Partner died, his and mine. His is bigger so I keep it behind mine so as to keep them both on my hand. In this case I'm drawing with my right hand, but there's no reason not to draw with the other. If you never tried drawing with your nondominant hand, you might be surprised at how well you do. It's not the hand that draws, it's the eye.

Mulberry paper, Pilot Pen fine black. Click to enlarge.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

EDM April 24 many faces

I have to credit another blogger, sorry, I really forgot where I read your post, but if you come in here, please bob up and get the credit due you for pointing me to a very good artist demo'ing the 20 second face, very loose application, and great fun.

I had to try this this morning, and you see the resulting crowd! I did go back in with touches of ink, couldn't resist, but this was great fun, to balance the color, find different facial expressions with minimal changes, all this done with my trusty one inch sponge brush.

The only thing is, comic relief constantly bursting in on me, I couldn't help thinking of the old joke about how long is the ninety-second Psalm. Answer: a minute and a half....sorry! I did refrain from painting twenty two faces here, though you will see.

And here's a closeup, detail of the same image if you're interesting in seeing in closer. It's done with Caran d'ache, what else, on Arches Hotpress, what else...

Click to enlarge.

Monday, April 23, 2012

EDMApril23 sweater in unraveling process

Today's ink drawing is of a cashmere sweater, from the thrift shop, half way through being unraveled so I can knit up the yarn into something I need more. I see socks from this harvest. It's sitting on the all purpose little round table which houses my box of needles, Caran d'ache tins, whatever I need at the moment.

As always, click to enlarge.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

EDM April 22 Earth Day

Taking care of Gaia matters every day! here's a little memory drawing of a seaside view in North Yorkshire, with the cliff falling away into the ocean, the cold old North Sea! memory from childhood.

Caran d'Ache and Pilot fine point pen, on Arches hotpress paper, height 4.5 inches, width 5.5 inches.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

EDM April 21 Workbox in usual state of organization

I have a series of character dolls I created (knitted and stitched), the Dollivers, whose adventures are chronicled on my other blog, Field and Fen, and the workbox is where I keep all kinds of scraps of fabric and tools ready when an idea for another set of outfits strikes. They have definite personalities, and are always ready to seize on any event as a reason for a new outfit, so I need an array of bits always in the box ready to go.

This is the current state of affairs!

Friday, April 20, 2012

EveryDay Matters April 20

The mulberry paper is lovely for drawing natural objects, since wherever you rest your pen a second, a little jog appears, very welcome, and the color and texture just lend themselves. Here's a houseplant, no idea what its name is, gift from the friend of a friend and none of us have identified it. Whatever it is, it is a wild grower, casting its seeds in all the surrounding pots so I have many offspring of this plant.

Then I did an ink and wash drawing of the bedroom closet and surrounding area, and here the Caran d'Ache used as a wash worked for me.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

EDM April19 cherry blossoms and tiny drawings

The wild cherry that was torn apart by a hurricane then further damaged by a freak blizzard in October, is gallantly blossoming again. I notice that a single branch of a cherry seen horizontally as in nature looks like a branch, and the same image seen vertically, looks like a whole tree. I imagine this is related to fractals in some way.

The other little ink and wash pieces are about four inches square, just using up the end of a sheet of Arches, on vignettes seen across the street from my back patio.

As always,click to enlarge.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

EveryDay Matters April 18 cherry bushes, daylilies, sedum, pachysandra by the path

Drawing with Pilot pen on mulberry paper, of the view from outside the front door, if you sit on the bottom stair -- daylily foliage, cherry bushes, sedum, pachysandra running along the front walk.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

EveryDay Matters April 17 several things at once

Lately I've been very occupied with art commitments, friends, planning for workshops, all kinds of things happening at once. The odd thing is that when I'm very busy I still make a lot of other art, such as the series I did in the last day and a bit.

I walked the labyrinth for a friend, and as usual, found something symbolic of her current struggle - a tiny wild alyssum, fragile looking, but in fact tough as anything. I made a picture of it on my hand,

to give you the relative size of it, lifted out of the ground (now safely at home in its own eggcup container), and drew it in black ink on mulberry paper.

Closeup of the drawing

showing more detail, and another image, further back to show how it sits on the page, always a big issue with situating a drawing.

I often go off the page in order to create negative space and interest, but here there was enough negative space within the architecture of the plant to provide plenty of interest.

Then on the way home, saw an old farmhouse, with new growth around it, trees and shrubs still going on, blossoms flying all over

And then a field with wild trees, flailing about.

No place to stop and park there, so I did both paintings at the nearest safe location, from memory. These are probably fun for the artist as much as anything, and I'll await the judgment of the viewer as to whether they're fun for them, too.

As always, click to get a slideshow and some enlargement.

Monday, April 16, 2012

EDM April 16 Cats at Bay! Duncan and Marigold Contemplate One Another

This morning it's cats for my EDM. As they would say, why not, they're the most important everyday matter of my life! jury's out on that, but anyway, here they are. Duncan, foreground is a huge longhaired black giant of a mild cat, the official host of the household to all visitors, Marigold further away a skittish sealpoint Burmese,both rescues, great friends despite the disparity in size and temperament.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

The Artists' Traveling Journal -- The Great Reveal!

Now, after many stages and decisions, the Artists' Traveling Journal, which I designed and built for the use of our local artists' group, to pass around, work on a page each, and end with a single joint artwork, now it can be shown!

Book size:cover 14 in.high, 12 wide, page size 12 x 10, enough pages for 18 participants.

Here's the front cover, unbleached muslin, dyed, painted, stamped, stenciled, mounted on board, pierced to allow ties to be threaded

Inside front cover with the title: The Sky's The Limit!

Inside back cover, showing a small section for artists to sign (in addition to signing their own pages) so that we see the group at a glance

Back cover, related to the front in materials and approach but different in design

Here's the book opened out accordion style, and getting a cat scan from one end

And then from the other

And here's how it can stand in a circle, very symbolic, and how there's an optical illusion in the pages furthest from the camera: no,they're not lying down, they're standing up,but the circle seems to baffle the eye! an unexpected bonus.

I hope the artists like it! because of the amount of handling it will receive, it comes with a one year parts and labor guarantee from the maker.

EDM April 15 deckview

This morning's drawing is of the part of the deck I can see from my chair beside the window. Arches hotpress, Pilot pen ink, Caran d'Ache watercolor crayon.

But stick around for the Great Reveal of the Artists' Book, the Traveling Journal which is now finished and ready for prime time, to be handed around artist to artist locally, so that each person can work on a page and end with a huge artwork!

I think I'll give it its own blogpost.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

EDM April 14, on location at Sayen Gardens

This is a lovely public garden, once a private home and garden and now open to everyone to enjoy the paths and blossoms and bridges and ponds, very small total area but large in what you can see and enjoy. A lot of people have wedding receptions here in summer, for the great photo opps.
I rarely work out of doors, too much stimulation, can't settle down,but I thought I'd give it a try today, and here's what resulted. We're between seasons, daffodils just fading, azaleas coming in, trees leafing out,but still plenty of sunshine coming through before the upper story fills in with leaves. True to my "whatever's there" plan, I didn't particularly pick and choose a view, just found a bench and set out my kit, then painted what was opposite me.

Friday, April 13, 2012

EDMApril13, Portrait of the Artist, They Do It with Mirrors

Responding to a couple of little tweaks yesterday from M and M (!) I set up a mirror arrangement, and did a self portrait for today's drawing. As you probably know, you don't do a self portrait by looking into one mirror, since that way all you're getting is a mirror image. You have to set up more mirrors so that you get the mirror image of the mirror image, if you follow me, that way you're getting a true,or truer image of your face.

The bigger drawing shows the arrangement of receding mirrors so that you see the front view of my face and top of body, and part of the back view as I did the drawing.

Then I made a detail for them as likes to see up closer.

Long time since I did any self portraits. You often notice that they're very intent looking, very serious,and that's because the artist is studying the face and designing the drawing, no time to grin!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

EveryDay Matters April 12, bathroom counter

Before I tossed the old toothpaste tube, I thought I'd give it a life extension by drawing it here on the counter, along with various other paraphernalia. This drawing is like the curate's egg: good in parts!! but transparency rules, and I still post it.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

EveryDay Matters April 10, kitchen stove

Cooking today, so I moved my drawing kit into the kitchen to record what was up on the stove. I used Arches HotPress with Pilot Pen and a sponge brush in plain water to create the wash effect.

Up in the studio, I'm in the midst of creating a big traveling journal, for the use of the artists in my local group. I'm making it with hard boards (painted on muslin and mounted on foamcore, very sturdy but light) and in accordion style, so that once it's done the rounds of the artists it can be exhibited opened out fully. And considering there are 18 signups, this book will open out to close on eighteen feet wide plus covers....we're measuring the gallery wall in order to determine how we can be sure and show this gigantor book eventually.

Pictures later of this adventure. At the moment the parts are resting under various heavy weights -- my little printmaking press, my shredder, my pasta maker, neither used in the kitchen, various hunks of plaster faces, containers of printmaking ink, whatever comes to hand. Which pretty much sums up my art philosophy, come to think of it!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

EDM April8 ink drawing of sofa area

In between various cooking things for Easter Sunday, son expected here shortly for dinner, I made an ink drawing, with wash, of the sofa area of the living room, with the afghans and multiple pillows beloved of the cats. They were busy with their morning nap on the beds, so they don't feature here.
This is done on Arches Hot Press Bright White, a wonderful glassy surface for ink drawing, and if you've never used it, do try it. It's expensive, but so worth it. And very much so if you make your own books for drawing and painting. Arches have been making paper since the fourteenth century, and I love to be part of that tradition by using it. I buy the big sheets which have deckles on all four sides, but I did break a sheet down to make a series of small sheets for drawings which will eventually be kept in a book or folio yet to be made. These are about 8 x 11 inches, sorry, didn't measure and now I'm on a different floor.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

EDM April7 Breakfast, and embroidery

The labyrinth piece is stitched, now needs to be stretched on a wider-than-high backing, and I think maybe, maybe, this is the last piece for the fiberarts exhibit in June. I hope so, because I'm about to plunge into building the artist's traveling journal next, ready for my group to start circulating and working in.
One thing I found about stitching the labyrinth itself and the convolutions I drew into the brains was that as you make those swoops and turns, you experience the same shift of consciousness as when doing a fullsize labyrinth walk. Great peaceful experience, and I recommend it even if you don't stitch usually. Just trace a classic labyrinth pattern, and do running stitch or something that doesn't distract you from the design as you go, and see if you get a similar experience. Running your finger around it doesn't really do it. This morning, lazy Saturday morning breakfast, cat Duncan tucked under my elbow while I drew my breakfast dishes after I finished my coffee and egg with wholegrain homemade bread, great small breakfast.
I used school chalk for the white highlights, and crayon for the colors, and a graphite stick for a bit of added emphasis on the shapes. I am learning to get the hang of this surface, and will try the rough side next. For the fine pen, though, the smooth side is required.

Friday, April 6, 2012

EDM April 6 white violets

Out walking today, I saw banks of white violets at the edge of a little strip of woodland, no scent, but lovely shape. So it seemed like a good time to add a little bit of color to the drawing for the day. Mulberry paper, waterleaf, no sizing, is not for watercolor, so this is very purist drawing, with just a bit of crayon or chalk added for emphasis. I really love the shape of these pages, and the laid texture of the paper
A closeup of the same drawing
Two pix I took, which gave me the feeling of wanting to draw them as usual by selecting only a few parts to draw. I brought home one violet to study for its architecture and she obligingly modeled for me.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

EDM April 5, wild cherry branch and leaves

This is part of what remains of the wild cherry tree on the patio, partly pulled down by the hurricane, partly by the October snow storm. But, since it's a wild cherry, it takes more than a couple of storms to deter it, and it knows about weather, and doesn't put out blossoms before there are bees available to work on them. Right now it has leaves only, but last year once the blossoms got going, the place was mobbed with bees, a loud buzzing all the hours the sun was on the flowers. .
This drawing, 7.5 inches by 11.5 inches, almost a perfect golden rectangle, is in a book of mulberry paper, pages absorbent, smooth one side, rough the other, bound in boards made of mulberry leaves. It's a handmade book, complete with twig ornament at the front stitching, and was a journal for a while. But now it's going to be my next drawing book, since the old square one is now filled, with the two excited paintings as its farewell! I like the smooth side of the paper for ink, but may use the rough side for pencil or pastel or maybe chalk. This shape is much more to my liking, and the soft tan color, warmer in rl than in pix, is a lovely backdrop for line drawing. Here's it's my trusty Pilot Pen fine point

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

EDM april 4, two blossom madness paintings

These are rapid excited paintings, done, and still wet when pictured, as you will notice from the buckling, which will all calm down once it dries and I press it under some heavy weight such as my cat Duncan. Can't paint outdoors, too many stimuli, so I did these after a spring walk where I took pictures of the trees all out in various blossoms.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

EDMApril3 studio corner

Today's painting/drawing, where I painted blocky shapes in, then went in with pen and with marker, is that area known to artists as the Corner of The Studio Where Stuff Ends Up. Since the studio is under the roof, it has a sloping ceiling, and that corner is the lowest, so it's good for rolls of paper, stretchers, nameless stuff that will be used one day, work drying, work hanging on the wall to think about, and all of it is out of the traffic.

Monday, April 2, 2012

EDM April 2, painting of daffodils and foliage

Today's EveryDay Matters entry is a painting, for a change, with drawing as the last stage, rather than a drawing with colored wash.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

EDM April 1, no joke!

Little drawing of the fireplace out of action, painting on silk hanging above it. I tried the thick and thin line concept on this one, hm. Worth a try, though. Interesting sidebar: I spent the afternoon needlepointing happily in the company of fellow embroiderers and my eye was "out" a bit when it came to this freehand drawing. Seems to be a little conflict between the two skills, so I will figure out how to deal with this, wanting to do both.

The embroiderers Guild is a wonderful, very funny, friendly group, so glad I got up my gumption and joined them.